Writing Center History

The University of Wisconsin-Superior Writing Center had its beginnings in 1966. (Fun fact: It is three years older than the University of Wisconsin-Madison Writing Center!) Its original name was the Wisconsin State University-Superior Writing Lab. The Writing Lab was part of the English Program at that time and remained so throughout much of its history until recently.

The Writing Lab was located for its first two years in a house that was later to be razed to make space for a parking lot for the Jim Dan Hill Library, which was built in 1968. The Writing Lab moved into the basement of the new Jim Dan Hill Library in 1968.This was one of a number of moves around campus for the Writing Lab (which, at some point came to be known as the Writing Center). We lose the trail of locations during the 1970s, to pick it back up again some time in the late 80s or early 90s, when the Writing Center could be found in Old Main. In c1994, the Writing Center was merged temporarily with Student Support Services and located in Erlanson Hall and then back to Old Main for a while. In 2000, the Writing Center found itself once again a part of the English Program, and it also found its way back to Jim Dan Hill Library-this time, a second-floor location. Then in about 2004, it moved to Sundquist Hall, to the former location of Health Services.

In 2008, the Writing Center became a core part of a university-wide initiative called Writing Across the Curriculum, whose goal is to foster a culture of writing at the university. One exciting development soon thereafter (in 2010) was the addition of online “chat” consultations to the Center’s menu of services. While this administrative arrangement with WAC ended in 2015, the Writing Center is still connected with WAC in principle as the Center continues to support student writers from across the disciplines.

With the opening of Swenson Hall in Fall 2011, the Writing Center moved to new quarters befitting its role as a hub for writing support for the entire university: Swenson Hall 1030, a great central location for this university-wide service.

2016 marked the 50th anniversary of our Writing Center. Here's to 50 more!

(Our thanks to Anthony Bukoski and Roger Forseth, Professors Emeriti, for their assistance in recalling this history. Dr. Bukoski, who also attended UW-Superior as an undergraduate student, worked as a tutor in the Writing Lab.)